TMC misleading Muslims on CAA to serve vested interest: BJP minority cell nat'l chief

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Kolkata, Nov 9 (PTI) BJP Minority Cell national president Haji Jamal Siddiqui on Monday accused the ruling TMC of treating Muslims as its vote bank and said minorities were being misguided by the ruling party on the issue of Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) implementation.

Noting that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has 'treated all sections of the society equally' with the aim of realising 'Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas', Siddiqui, who was here to look into the functioning of his party's minority morcha in the state, said the TMC dispensation has pursued 'politics of division and not of development'.

'Minorities in Bengal have been betrayed for the last several decades in West Bengal. First, it was Congress, then the Left Front and then the TMC, all of them have done nothing for the development of minorities in the state.

'The TMC, for their vested interest, has misled and misguided the minorities on the issue of CAA,' Siddiqui said at a press conference here.

The new citizenship law emerged as a flashpoint last year, with the TMC opposing the contentious legislation tooth and nail, and the BJP pressing for its implementation.

The state had witnessed widespread violent protests last December over the matter.

'The CAA doesn't take anyone's citizenship, it grants citizenship to refugees. But parties like the TMC have misguided people on the issue. The minorities now have very well understood that the TMC, for the last ten years, has used them as its vote bank. The minorities in the next assembly polls will reject the TMC, lock, stock and barrel,' he said.

Claiming that minorities have been deprived of basic amenities in the rural areas of Bengal, Siddiqui said people wanted development from the TMC government, but they got 'betrayal in return'.

Reacting to the allegations, senior TMC leader and MP Sougata Roy said Siddiqui is not aware of ground realities.

'He should visit villages and check the list of various developmental projects undertaken for minorities to know what the TMC government has done for them,' Roy said.

Minorities, which comprise nearly 30 per cent of the state's electorate, are a deciding factor in almost 110 of 294 assembly seats, spread across various districts of the state.